WVU Drills All Three Sides Of The Ball In First Contact Session
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Fresh looks at West Virginia’s ninth spring practice session on Saturday.
The Mountaineers hosted Alumni Day, and had more than 50 players with their families return to campus. Marking the first time the team chose to hold it on a weekend other than the Gold-Blue spring game, the event was a success in terms of sheer numbers of returning players, which got a dose of good BBQ and the chance to watch the current squad run through a series of drills and full scale work.
Here’s a couple clips from the session, held both at the Caperton Indoor Practice Facility and on Mountaineer Field inside Milan Pulskar Stadium. It was notable because it was the first full contact practice of the spring. Up first, a look at the passing of Will Grier as he works a series of drops and patterns in combination with the center and a handful of receivers. Grier takes the snap, fakes a hand-off or makes a read and delivers the ball.
It was a simple sideline drill, but one that hones footwork, delivery, timing, drop steps and more. The receivers also worked off slight press coverage, and went through a series of breaks and patterns before catching the ball and securing it to the body to avoid a fumble.
The defense also gets a glimpse, as coordinator Tony Gibson oversees run and pass fits. Standing behind his already aligned defense, Gibson gave a signal to the offense – which was really just another set of 11 defensive players – to run certain plays in a general direction. It forced the defense to read and react correctly, and focused in on how the players fit up, their angles to the ball, how they pursued the play and if the team kept backside protection or were able to get pressure and collapse the pocket.
This was not a full-contact drill, but it did set up the series of 11-on-11 first team work done later inside the stadium.